Portland State U Receives $25 M Matching Grant for Sustainability

Portland State University (OR) has received a $25 million challenge grant from the James F. and Marion L. Miller Foundation. PSU officials believe this to be the largest single gift to sustainability in U.S. higher education history. The challenge grant requires PSU to raise at least an additional $25 million over the next 10 years. Both the $25 million Miller grant and the funds raised to match it must be used exclusively for sustainability programs.

Princeton U Expands Campus Garden

Princeton University (NJ) moved its student-run organic garden plot from a 12 by 55 foot piece of land to a 1.5 acre lot. The University has also provided the student garden with a storage bin for tools, a composting area furnished with large piles of leaves gathered from campus, two picnic tables, and a farm stand for washing newly harvested produce. The expansion is a result of the success of the pilot garden, which was started in the summer of 2007.

SUNY ESF Completes Several Green Initiatives

The State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry has surfaced the bridge entrance to the F. Franklin Moon Library with Flexi-Pave, a material that contains a 50 percent ratio of stone and recycled tire mixed with a urethane binder. Flexi-Pave is porous so rain and melting snow flow through to the ground instead of producing puddles or runoff. SUNY ESF has also installed two new bicycle storage racks at two halls on campus and has installed a bioretention basin to divert rooftop rainwater.

Susquehanna U Breaks Ground on Green Science Building

Susquehanna University (PA) has begun construction of a new $33 million science building. When it opens in 2010, the new 75,000-square-foot facility will feature the use of recycled materials in construction, an energy-efficient HVAC system, water-reduction capabilities, daylight harvesting, and a rooftop greenhouse.

Sustainability Colloquiums at Ohio Wesleyan, U Rhode Island

The University of Rhode Island's Fall 2008 Honors Colloquium, "People and Planet – Global Environmental Change," will explore human-caused global change, its consequences and potential responses through a series of lectures, films, exhibits and a cabaret. The series of free, weekly events featuring international experts and URI faculty members will run throughout the fall semester. In collaboration with public libraries throughout Rhode Island, URI’s Honors Colloquium will partner with book clubs to recom

Swarthmore College Installs Green Roof

Swarthmore College (PA) has installed a green roof on its news student residence, David Kemp Hall. The new green roof is the second on campus.

Texas Christian U Forms Sustainability Committee

Texas Christian University has formed the Climate Commitment Committee, a committee to oversee the implementation of eco-friendly construction and sustainable materials. The committee will be headed by Provost Nowell Donovan and made up of other faculty and students. In addition, TCU has announced its theme for the semester to be "Think Purple, Live Green." The two initiatives are in response to the TCU Chancellor's commitment to the American College & University Presidents' Climate Commitment.

U Buffalo Participates in Ride-Share Program

The University at Buffalo (NY) Parking and Transportation Services has begun participating in the Good Going WNY ridesharing program, created by the Greater Buffalo-Niagara Regional Transportation Council. All UB faculty, staff and students, and UB affiliates can sign up for a ride-share through the Good Going website which also features information on carpooling, taking the bus/rail, and bicycling. The website also offers a tool that enables users to input their commuted mileage and keep a running tally of money saved, emissions reduced and calories burned.

U Cincinnati, Gallaudet U Open Green Buildings

The University of Cincinnati (OH) has opened its Center for Academic Research Excellence/Crawley Building. The $205 million and 240,000 square foot building was designed to LEED Silver certification specifications. The Gallaudet University (DC) has also opened a new $28 million green classroom building. The University hopes that the James Lee Sorenson Language and Communication Center, which was designed by and for deaf people, will receive LEED certification.

U Cincinnati, Maryville, Florida Southern Eliminate Food Trays

The University of Cincinnati (OH), Maryville College (TN), and Florida Southern College have stopped using trays in campus dining halls. UC's initiative was implemented after the pilot program saved 2,030 pounds of food waste in one week and the Maryville initiative originated from a resolution through the Student Government Association. All programs aim to reduce food waste, water consumption, and energy use.

UC San Diego Installs Solar Array

The University of California, San Diego has begun installing a solar electric system on the roof of two of its parking garages. The new system is made up of Solar Trees(TM), solar panels that are placed on steel bars and resemble the shape of a tree, and provides shade for parked cars and future infrastructure for electric vehicles. Each Solar Tree(TM) at UCSD will generate more than 17,000 kWhs of clean energy per year.

U Denver Commits to Planting 100 Trees on Campus

The University of Denver (CO) has announced the Daniels Centennial Trees project which aims to plant 100 different trees across campus by April 2009. The college is soliciting donations to cover the cost of the trees and to endow a Daniels Centennial Scholarship. The project grew out of a desire to celebrate the college’s history, create a fund to help students in the future and to support the Denver Mayor's Tree by Tree initiative.

U Denver Installs CNG Refueling Station

The University of Denver (CO) has installed a compressed natural gas vehicle refueling station on its campus. The new pump serves the growing fleet of maintenance and other DU vehicles that run on natural gas. DU is the first university in the state of Colorado to install a CNG fueling station.

U Denver Opens Green Residence Hall

The University of Denver (CO) has opened a 356 bed, $39.8 million green residence hall. Green features of Nagel Hall include a bicycle storage unit complete with shower and bathroom facilities, energy efficient refrigerators and microwaves, and dual flush toilets.

U Denver Purchases Wind Energy Credits

The University of Denver (CO) has committed to purchasing 15 million kWh of wind energy credits during each of the next two years. DU uses about 48 million kilowatt hours of electricity annually, so the wind credits compensate for about 31 percent of the University’s consumption. The total annual cost of the purchase, $75,000, is partially paid for by $6 quarterly student fee contribution. The University has absorbed the remaining cost.

U Florida to Use Biodiesel Fuel to Power Pep Rally

The University of Florida has announced plans to power this year's Gator Growl, UF's homecoming pep rally, with biodiesel fuel. The process involves converting leftover cooking oil from campus dining locations into useable biodiesel fuel at the Motor Pool, a division of the Physical Plant. Generators hooked up to the audio and lighting equipment will run off the biodiesel, which is cleaner than pure diesel and reduces greenhouse gas emissions.

U Georgia to Pilot Tailgater Recycling Program

The University of Georgia has announced plans to pilot a tailgator recycling program for this fall's football season. UGA has contracted American Stadium Services to circulate through North Campus tailgating areas to collect recyclables before kickoff and up until halftime. The company plans to recycle glass, aluminum, plastic, and paper. If the pilot program is successful, UGA might expand the program to include the rest of the tailgating area.

U Illinois Urbana Champaign Pilots Tray-free Program

The University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign has begun a pilot program to eliminate trays in dining halls on campus. Throughout the year, the University plans to compare food waste and energy conservation data from the cafeterias that still use trays to the one tray-free dining hall on campus.

U Minnesota Organic Farm Receives USDA Certification

The University of Minnesota's campus organic farm has received USDA certification. The garden, now in its fourth year, is maintained by students in the College of Food, Agriculture, and Natural Resource Sciences.

U New England Launches Alternative Transportation Program

The University of New England (ME) has launched a new program that offers free bicycles or free Zipcar usage to incoming freshmen who opt to leave their cars at home. The program also provides expanded free downtown shuttle service and discounted taxi or limo service on the Biddeford campus, and free taxi vouchers to students at the Portland campus. UNE’s alternative transportation program was developed by the UNE Office of Student Affairs and Office of Safety and Security.

U Pennsylvania to Hold Groundbreaking for Green Building

The University of Pennsylvania will hold a groundbreaking ceremony for a new green building on campus, the Horticulture Center Complex. The Complex is slated to achieve LEED Platinum certification. The 20,840-square-foot facility will feature an efficient ground-source heat pump, a green roof, photovoltaic panels, and photocell sensors to automatically dim the electric lights in use on bright days to reduce energy use.

U Rhode Island Receives $1.476 M in Alternative Energy Funding

The University of Rhode Island has received $1.476 million in federal funding to help URI's Plant Biotechnology Laboratory develop renewable energy technologies and improve consumer access to alternative fuels. The funding aims to help the lab continue its research on the genetic traits of switchgrass, which could increase the amount of fuel produced from renewable resources.

U Rochester Purchases RECs, Passes out CFLs

The University of Rochester (NY) has purchased 11,600,000 kWh of renewable energy credits (RECs) for the next two years. New York State wind farms will supply 5 percent of the RECs while the remaining 95 percent will come from the wind energy nationwide. In related news, as Rochester students moved onto campus residences, they received free compact fluorescent light bulbs for desk lamps as reminders to conserve energy.

Utah State U, U Illinois Chicago Launch Sustainability Websites

The Utah State University Sustainability Council has launched a website and wiki page on sustainability. The site enables faculty, staff, and students to share sustainability ideas and information. The site features upcoming events, a sustainability forum, and current sustainability initiatives at USU. The University of Illinois at Chicago has also launched a sustainability website. Some of the website is still under development, but once it is complete, the site will feature a list of sustainability related courses, departments, research units, and funding opportunities; a list of campus and community sustainability initiatives; and sustainability-related campus news and events.

U Tennessee Partners to Build Cellulosic Ethanol Pilot Facility

The University of Tennessee Research Foundation has partnered with DuPont Danisco Cellulosic Ethanol LLC to construct a pilot-scale biorefinery and research and development facility for cellulosic ethanol in Vonore, Tennessee. The pilot-scale biorefinery will develop the commercial package for DDCE's cellulosic ethanol technology. The project will utilize UT's expertise in cellulosic feedstock production and co-product research, as well as its work with Tennessee farmers to develop the first dedicated cellulosic energy crop supply chain for cellulosic biorefineries utilizing switchgrass. The facility design will incorporate the flexibility to operate on two different non-food biomass feedstocks: corn stover, cobs and fiber, and switchgrass. The plant capacity will be 250,000 gallons of cellulosic ethanol annually. Site preparations are scheduled to begin this fall, and ethanol should be available from the pilot plant by December 2009.

U Texas Arlington to Hold Groundbreaking for Green Building

The University of Texas at Arlington will hold a groundbreaking ceremony for its new Engineering Research Complex. The building will make extensive use of daylighting, have 40 percent of its roof covered in plants, capture up to 48,000 gallons of rainwater in underground tanks for use in landscape irrigation, and use landscaping that requires little water. The University expects the building to achieve LEED Silver certification.

U Utah Opens Farmer's Market on Campus

The University of Utah has opened a farmer's market on its campus that offers local produce and unique arts and crafts. The market is open to Utah faculty, staff, and students as well as to the surrounding community. The idea for the farmer's market grew out of a comprehensive wellness program begun two years ago by the university's human resources team. The goal of the program, called WellU, is to inspire employees to make healthy and sustainable lifestyle changes.

U Wisconsin Starts Recycling Program at Football Games

A University of Wisconsin student group dedicated to sustainability on campus, REthink Wisconsin, has partnered with UW athletics to start recycling at football games. The organizers hope that the initiative, "Wear red, think green, Badgers recycled," will recycle 30,000 plastic bottles.

Western Michigan U, Kalamazoo Valley CC To Install Wind Turbines

Western Michigan University and Kalamazoo Valley Community College have partnered to install a Wind Energy Center on the KVCC campus. The Wind Energy Center, which will include multiple wind turbines, will serve as a model wind turbine site and provide educational opportunities to KVCC students. KVCC plans to develop installation and maintenance certification programs for technicians and WMU will focus on product design and manufacturing programs for undergraduate students.

ACUTA Survey Finds 2/3 of College IT Depts Are Going Green

The Association for Information Communications Technology Professionals in Higher Education has completed a survey that found that two-thirds of colleges and universities have taken or are taking energy-saving and environmentally conscious steps. The survey found that 80 percent of schools recycle computer and networking equipment; 73 percent of schools have bought more efficient equipment; and 63 percent of schools have implemented a policy that aims to reduce the amount of printing done on campus.

AP Covers Campuses' Move to Go Trayless

The Associated Press has published an article on the increasing number of U.S. colleges and universities going trayless in dining halls on campus. The article mentions tray-eliminating initiatives at Glenville State College (WV), Georgia Tech, University of Florida, and University of Maine at Farmington. The article reports that 50-60 percent of Aramark's 500 campuses and 230 out of Sodexo's 600 campuses are expected to go trayless.

Bates College Receives $2.5M for Sustainable Foods on Campus

Bates College (ME) has received an anonymous donation of $2.5 million to meet the additional cost of serving more local, natural, and organic food at Bates. The gift has allowed the college to spend 28 percent of its annual food budget on sustainable foods. As a result of the donation, Bates is dedicating the 2008-2009 school year to understanding the food system.

Baylor U to Expand Recycling Program

Baylor University (TX) has announced plans to expand its recycling program to include athletic events and campus offices. Recycling bins will be placed at strategic locations around Baylor athletic complexes when a game is taking place. In addition to the containers, food vendors will be requested to recycle cardboard boxes, clean paper, and plastic as they prepare their booths prior to each game. After the event, cleaning crews will remove recyclables left over in stands. The University will offer recycling at football, basketball, softball, volleyball, tennis, and baseball, with other athletic events to be incorporated at a later time. Additionally, over the next month, the first 400 recycling containers will be placed at various offices on campus. An additional 200 bins will be added at a later date. The containers will be used to collect cardboard, white paper, colored papers, plastics, aluminum and tin cans.

Bentley College Signs Agreement to Reduce Energy Use

Bentley College (MA) has made an agreement with Infor to monitor and reduce energy consumption throughout campus. Bentley is currently gathering data on the energy efficiency of its campus-wide assets, including air handlers, chillers and other large equipment, which will be used to develop a preventative maintenance program that incorporates energy consumption patterns.

Furman U Hires Director of Sustainability and Env'l Education

Furman University (SC) has hired Dr. Angela Halfacre as the Director of Sustainability and Environmental Education. Halfacre will also be an Associate Professor of Political Science. She will be teaching environmental policy and sustainability courses. After graduating from Furman, she received M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in political science from the University of Florida in 1994 and 1997, respectively. Her doctoral work had a substantive focus in environmental policy, and she also worked as policy specialist for the Florida Department of Environmental Protection.

Goucher College Launches Community Bicycle Program

Goucher College (MD) has launched a community bicycle program to make it easier for the campus community to use alternative transportation. Each of the 10 cruiser-style bikes is unisex and clearly labeled as being part of Goucher’s community bicycle fleet, which will be maintained by the college. There is no fee for using the bikes, and they can be picked up and left anywhere on campus, as long as they remain on well-traveled paths. Helmets, helmet bags, and combination locks will also be available for riders.

Indiana U Releases Guide to Sustainable Student Living

The Indiana University Task Force on Campus Sustainability has released the "Indiana Sustainable Student," a guide to sustainable living practices for students that features such issues as water and energy conservation, alternative transportation, and sustainable food. The guide was produced by an IU senior who participated in the IU Summer Program in Sustainability, a summer sustainability internship program. In addition to providing concrete tips for sustainable living, the "Indiana Sustainable Student"

Ithaca College School of Business Receives LEED Platinum

The Ithaca College (NY) School of Business has received LEED Platinum certification. The 38,800 square foot Dorothy D. and Roy H. Park Center for Business and Sustainable Enterprise, which opened with the start of the spring 2008 semester, features a vegetated roof, a south-facing wall of glass, extensive us of natural lighting, and a storm water reclamation system. Ithaca College purchases 50 percent of the electricity used for the building from renewable sources. The building received 56 points in the LEED certification system.

Loyola U New Orleans Expands Recycling Program

Loyola University New Oreleans (LA) has expanded its recycling program by installing blue bins at the entrances to all campus buildings. The recycling bins accept aluminum and tin cans. Additionally, the University's cleaning service has placed 40 office paper collection bins throughout campus.

Milwaukee Area Technical College Installs Wind Turbine

Milwaukee Area Technical College's Mequon campus (WI) has installed a wind turbine. After the originally purchased turbine was burnt in a fire in 2006, MATC was forced to purchase another set of gear.

Montana State U to Host Wind Applications Center

Montana State University has been named by the U.S. Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory as the home for the state's Wind Applications Center. As part of the project, MSU will incorporate more wind-specific topics into existing engineering courses for students, help educate the public about wind energy and provide support for Montana's growing wind industry. The wind applications center contract, which was awarded in April, provides the University with $40,000 a year for three years. MSU will begin offering wind-related coursework this fall.

Northern Illinois U Offers Fair Trade Coffee

Northern Illinois University has begun a pilot program to offer fair trade certified coffee at two snack bars on campus. The initiative, which is a result of a student campaign, tests student interest in six varieties of fair trade coffee.

Palomar College Police Add 2 3-Wheel Electric Scooters to Fleet

Palomar College (CA) campus police have added two three-wheeled electric stand-up scooters to their fleet of vehicles. The scooters, which run mostly off of electricity, take about four hours to charge and cost about 10 cents per day to operate.

Park U Opens Green Residence Hall

Park University (MO) has officially opened Copley Quad Student Residence Hall, an 86,000 square feet building designed to LEED Silver standards. The design incorporates recycled content carpets, carpet pads, and underlayments. Plumbing in the building uses low-flow fixtures, with a projected water reduction of 40 percent compared with similar buildings.

Pomona College Launches Folding Bike-Sharing Program

Pomona College (CA) has unveiled a new bike-sharing program that allows students to borrow folding bicycles. The bikes fold in half in a matter of seconds and, while folded, weigh less than 25 pounds and measure in at just over two-feet-by-two-feet, making them perfect for commutes on busy city buses and Metrolink trains. Program organizers hope the bikes will help broaden transportation options for students participating in the Pomona College Internship Program, which places students in offices across Southern California.

Rice, Worcester Polytechnic, Goucher Sign Agreement with Zipcar

Rice University (TX) has entered into an agreement with Zipcar, a car-sharing company that places vehicles on campus for students to reserve at their convenience. Rice students can purchase a $35 yearlong membership that allows them to reserve a car for $7 per hour or $60 per day. Insurance and gas are then paid for by Zipcar. Worcester Polytechnic Institute (MA) has also announced a partnership with Zipcar. Zipcar services will be available to all WPI faculty, staff, and students 18 years of age and older. WPI hopes that the new agreement will encourage students to leave their vehicles at home. Goucher College (MA) has also launched a partnership with Zipcar. Two hybrid vehicles will be made available to all Goucher students, faculty, and staff over the age of 18 with a valid driver's license.

Roanoke College Forms Green Advisory Committee

Roanoke College (VA) President Michael Maxey has formed a Green Advisory Committee. The group of more than 20 faculty, staff, and students will begin its work by conducting an audit of current College efforts. Results of the audit will be used to help identify additional opportunities for sustainability efforts. The committee will then examine the feasibility of the various options in regards to impact and cost-effectiveness and will make recommendations to President Maxey and his Cabinet.

Rochester Institute of Technology Building Receives LEED Gold

The Rochester Institute of Technology (NY) College of Applied Science and Technology building has received LEED Gold certification. The 43,000 square-foot building, which opened in April, features rainwater reuse systems, lighting and climate control systems, and a curriculum that uses the building as a teaching tool.

Saint Xavier U Opens Green Residence Hall

Saint Xavier University (IL) has opened a new green residence hall. The 36,664 square-foot building was built with the goal of achieving LEED Gold certification. The new hall was designed to use both natural and mechanical ventilation, and a 50-foot high circular glass stair tower draws tempered air to assist in summer night pre-cooling and winter heating. The structure also features solar panels on the roof and a rain garden that filters roof water runoff. In addition, 100 percent of its power comes from a mixture of renewable energy sources and carbon offsets.

Saint Xavier U Print Services Goes Green

Saint Xavier University's (IL) Copy Cats Print Services has announced a new initiative to make their business more environmentally friendly. Copy Cats has purchased a new digital system that uses 45 percent less electricity, emits 48 percent less heat, releases no ozone or particle emissions and is lead-free.